HOW TO WORK WITH YOUR NORTH NODE

In astrology, our North Node reveals the teachings we need to embrace for emotional evolution. With the collective North Node now shifting from Leo to Cancer, Rebecca Farrar says the time is ripe for going back to soul school …

Photo: Matheus Ferrero

After a year and a half with the North Node in shiny, self-expressed Leo, it moves into emotionally motivated Cancer on November 6, 2018, where it will stay until May 5, 2020.

The Lunar Nodes are astronomical points where the Moon’s orbit intersects the Earth’s path around the Sun. They represent fundamental ideas of where we have been and where we are headed in our collective evolution.

This North Node’s sign change into Cancer implies a shared shift towards learning lessons in empathy and emotional intelligence. Our collective homework over the next 1.5 years includes fostering feelings and naming needs. 

Opposite Cancer on the zodiacal axis, the Capricorn South Node indicates our communal comfort zone of rules, regulations, and structures (a few of patriarchy’s favorite things). While both Cancer and Capricorn crave a sense of security and stability, they seek these in different ways. Cancer wants to nurture self or others as a way of establishing value, while Capricorn prefers self-containment or boundaries to maintain control.

Core themes for integration during this nodal axis shift are healthy boundaries, balancing internal self-care and self-parenting, and learning to express emotions in a healthy way.

If your North Node is in Cancer, you’ll have your Nodal Return, which occurs about every 18.5 years. But even if your North Node isn’t in Cancer, think back 18-19 years ago for insight into the coming phase.

PLUS read on for a guide to your own personal North Node … 

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In the natal chart, the North Node is our “major” at Earth University. It’s what we came here to study intensely, while the South Node is where we have already had a crash course. For us to truly live a fulfilled existence, we need to intentionally move towards our North Node.

Calculate your natal North Node HERE and discover your soul’s lessons below. *Note, your “South Node” is automatically in the sign opposite the North, so you don’t need to calculate it. 

 

ARIES NORTH NODE // LIBRA SOUTH NODE 
Focus learning on how to become more independent and self-reliant. Move away from codependent patterning, or relying heavily on others for satisfaction or approval.

TAURUS NORTH NODE // SCORPIO SOUTH NODE
Major evolution happens by focusing more time on your self-worth, and your desires for pleasure and connection. Focus less on inappropriate intensity or spending too much time in crisis mode.

GEMINI NORTH NODE // SAGITTARIUS SOUTH NODE 
Seek wisdom in situations where you get to see both sides or get to flex your curiosity muscle. Avoid places that activate self-righteousness or big picture thinking without openness to new ideas.

CANCER NORTH NODE // CAPRICORN SOUTH NODE 
Your soul curriculum centers on your emotional field and home life. Focus as much as possible on giving up patterns of stoicism or overworking (especially during this next year and a half phase of your nodal return).

LEO NORTH NODE // AQUARIUS SOUTH NODE 
Embrace your individuality and the part of you that wants to take center stage, while leaning away from always focusing on your place in a community or waiting for others before doing what you want.

VIRGO NORTH NODE // PISCES SOUTH NODE 
Life learning emphasizes day-to-day acts and routines, and bringing order to chaos. Rely less on tendencies towards confusion or escapism as a way of disassociating.

LIBRA NORTH NODE // ARIES SOUTH NODE 
Cultivate cooperation and partnerships that harmonize justice and fairness. Leave behind inclinations of impulsiveness or self-centeredness that focus too much on individual identity.

SCORPIO NORTH NODE // TAURUS SOUTH NODE 
Study shadow work and practice vulnerability in order to encounter your power, while becoming less attached to material items and the status quo.

SAGITTARIUS NORTH NODE // GEMINI SOUTH NODE 
Investigate your sense of adventure and discover more ways to trust yourself through traveling or direct communication. Become less dependent on seeking more information or having to always say the right thing.

CAPRICORN NORTH NODE // CANCER SOUTH NODE 
Teachings take the form of self-respect and self-care that allows you to claim your authority. Release obsessing over the past, or becoming dependent on others.

AQUARIUS NORTH NODE // LEO SOUTH NODE 
Education occurs through actively participating in groups and community. Spend less effort on wanting approval or having melodramatic tendencies tied to an overemphasis on your own needs.

PISCES NORTH NODE // VIRGO SOUTH NODE 
Keep reviewing practices that connect you to your spiritual self. Allow for compassion and surrender to a higher power without analyzing or worrying about doing something incorrectly.

STYLIST ANNA TREVELYAN THINKS TRUMP CAN BRING US TOGETHER

Ruby Warrington talks to stylist Anna Trevelyan about alien abduction, Trump as a catalyst for change, and being vegan in the fashion industry …

I first encountered stylist of the moment Anna Trevelyan at our mutual friend Sah D’Simone’s Happiness Equation workshop. She was the girl with the green hair and the quick, curious mind (a Gemini, of course), dressed in a kind of Manga-meets-Atlantis mash-up that would be more at home in the streets of Tokyo than Brooklyn’s Maha Rose Center for The Healing Arts.

But then as she puts it in her IG profile, Anna is: “A bit fashion. A bit cosmic.”

Having come up through the fashion ranks assisting Gaga’s former creative director Nicola Formichetti, Anna followed her childhood love of fantasy into the industry. In her own words, “I’m just not into reality stuff. I have a crazy and borderline confusing imagination!” Growing up in the heart in England, this meant: “I always died my hair and made my own clothes. But I had no concept that something like fashion even existed.”

Fast-forward to 2017, and fashion totally knows Anna exists, and her work is all over the top mags and ad campaigns. Like this one for Cara Delevingne’s Do You collection for Puma.

But what I love most about Anna (as well as the mermaid hair), is that she’s one of few voices in the mainstream fashion arena to be super vocal about being vegan, and the environmental impact of animal agriculture. She’s also majorly pro-diversity, casting models of every color, shape, size and gender in her long-standing catwalk collaborations with Brit designer Ashish.

Then there’s her lifelong fascination with alien abduction, and the crystals she keeps like pets in her Brooklyn apartment. Curiouser, and curiouser …

Ruby Warrington: So Anna, how long have you been into the more spiritual, numinous side of life?
Anna Trevelyan: Since birth, I guess. When I was little, I was into aliens, UFO sightings, crop circles. I was such a nerd. I had all these UFO sighting maps on my wall and stuff. I was kind of obsessed with alien abduction, the history of the Earth and evolution. Like, what else is out there and where do we come from?

RW: All the deep questions! But then you pursued a career in fashion, which can be very superficial. What are your practices to bridge the gap or how do you find meaning within the fashion industry?
AT: Well firstly, a lot of people in fashion genuinely have a love for art and creativity and inclusion. It’s not all about consumerism. Personally, I don’t want to do anything that doesn’t have meaning to me—especially this last year, with so much crazy stuff going on. So I always try to spread a message of positivity and what I believe in. For example, I work with this designer called Ashish and this season we did all these slogans like, Love Sees No Colour, and Be More Tender.

But then there is the consumerist part of the industry and the environmental part, that I personally have a really difficult time with. And the issues about racial inclusion on catwalks an in ad campaigns. There’s a lot of work that needs to be done.

RW: You’re also very vocal on your social media about veganism. Why is that so important to you?
AT: I’ve been vegetarian for 20 years, and vegan on and off—unfortunately I love cheese! But this is super important to me, as the beef industry is one of the most damaging things to the environment at the moment. It also really hurts me to see people eating meat. You’re essentially killing, and then eating that trauma. I just don’t understand why you would do that. And before, I never really expressed my feelings about it, but now I’m just like, “You know what? Fuck it … “ I don’t want animals to be traumatized just so they can be slaughtered. And I don’t want people to be consuming trauma.

RW: The fashion industry also loves fur. Do you feel as passionately about that?
AT: I never wear fur, and I never shoot fur anymore. I have done it in the past and I felt horrible about it. But I love shoes, I collect shoes like crazy, and so I do still wear leather. That’s something I need to look into, you know? I think of fur as this evil thing, so why do I think leather is okay? So I need to check myself and do a bit more research on that for sure. I would love to make a vegan shoe line, something super sexy!

Ashish FW17

RW: I think it’s amazing that you’re actually putting yourself out there and saying these things, because so many people are like, “These are my beliefs … until the next big money job comes in.” But having that integrity, I think, is part of leading a spiritual life. Like if your actions are aligning with your beliefs, you’re living your spiritual truth.
AT: Exactly. One massive publication asked me to do a fur shoot for them. It would have been great for my career, but I couldn’t do it. I was like, “let me do a faux fur story instead?” They didn’t reply. But then faux fur is actually the 8th worst fabric for the environment. So I need to start thinking about all these things.

RW: Don’t you think that eventually, if public opinions start to change significantly, then brands are going to have to follow suit? In the same way it’s happening with with organic food …
AT: Yes. It has to start somewhere. It’s the same with mass produced clothing—like yeah, it’s great that you can get a bunch of stuff for cheap, but what conditions are people working in? I don’t even really know how to begin with that.

RW: How about taking more direct action?
AT: Well after Trump’s immigration ban, I did this meditation, and I was imagining all of the souls of the world together, happy and warm, and just free to move wherever they want to move and experience what they want to experience. It was such an intense meditation and afterwards I saw light coming out my hands. Crazy! So I got all my influential girlfriends together and hosted a Girl’s Fight Club to raise money for the UNHCR, which is the UN refugee support.

It was also a statement about how I hate females being convinced we have to compete, when we are so much stronger together. That amazing goddess energy! That raised, not loads, but like 500, 600 dollars. I have a sort of theory that Trump is this kind of higher power, doing all this crazy shit to bring us all together. Either that or he’s reptilian.

RW: I swing between the two myself! So you meditate, how about any other spiritual practices? Your work means you have this crazy travel schedule and you’re very out there. How do you take care of your inner world?
AT: Last year I started doing yoga, which I never did before because I’m not like a super athletic person or anything. And you know those people that do yoga, and all they talk about is doing yoga? Now all I talk about is yoga! That has really helped me to settle down and focus and be strong and feel good. I love Bikram yoga, Kundalini yoga, Vinyasa. They’re all great.

My house is also full of crystals and plants, and the energy I get from them is amazing. I feel more grounded just looking at them, and I even kiss them and speak to them. I take my crystals around with me too. Like I choose a few and just take them when I travel and stuff. I also use them in my yoga and meditation.

RW: Spoken like a true Material Girl, balancing it out in the Mystical World. Finally, what’s the most otherworldly experience you’ve encountered in your life?
AT: The first time I did past life regression, when I was like 15 or 16. In it, I walked down a tunnel and there was a doorway, which was the door to the past life. I was shaking, physically shaking, and I as walked through the door it shut behind me. I immediately felt so calm. And then in my past life I experienced my own death, and it was amazing. I died, and my soul felt so light, as if being human, having this body, was the heaviest burden. From then on, I’ve had no fear of death. I’m actually excited for it, now that I know how it feels.

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:: MATERIAL GIRL ::

My label: My favorite brands at the moment are Ashish (always a glitter protest), Hyein Seo (‘Final Boss’ collection for bad girls), and Gucci (of course).

Ashish S17

My shoes: Pretty much always sky high stilettos and platforms—Marc Jacobs is killing me at the moment—and then Nike’s for when it’s sadly necessary to be practical.

Sneakers, $169, Nike

My fragrance: I wear something different all the time! At the moment I have Marc Jacobs’ Daisy. I like young summery perfume …

Daisy Eau de Toilette, $100, Marc Jacobs

My jewels: $1 big silver hoops, every day.

Hoops, $3.90, Forever 21

My pampering: My hair, nails and eyelashes are super regular and necessary upkeep takes a lot of time tbh.

My food: Vegan deliciousness—I wish they had Cafe Gratitude everywhere!

My home: Lots of windows and sunshine, plants, and I collect robots.

Robot inspo

:: MYSTICAL WORLD ::

My awakening: Say thank you each day to the Universe and be grateful.

My sign: Gemini through and through. But I have Cancer rising and my Moon in Taurus. I think the Cancer brings me back and the Taurus grounds me and helps me feel more balanced.

My mantra: I don’t have a mantra.

My healer: I have practiced with several energy healers, and I have one psychic in London and one in California. And they’re both good at different things. But the greatest healer is your self, and self realization.

My mission: Bring light, be genuine, be kind, speak from the heart, be unafraid, show love, make people aware of the importance of vegetarianism for themselves and for the world, work for humanity and Mother Earth, take no shit.

 

At the Women’s March on Washington

READING FOR THE WANING QUARTER SAGITTARIUS MOON

The waning quarter Sagittarius Moon is an opportunity for inner exploration, says Jennifer RacioppiCollage: Seana Gavin

Waning Quarter Moon :: February 18 2017 :: 2.33pm EST :: 0 degrees Sagittarius

This waning quarter Sagittarius Moon emphasizes the reconciliation of our tender intuition with our blunt need for freedom. Punctuating two eclipses, the February 10 Full Moon Lunar Eclipse in Leo and the upcoming February 26 New Moon Solar Eclipse in Pisces, we are asked to shed what blocks us from fully hearing (and integrating) our intuition.

The Moon traveling through freedom seeking Sagittarius while squaring the sun in emotional Pisces assists the tectonic plates of our life to shift. Now’s the time to purge anything holding us back from our authentic truth, especially before the next New Moon Solar Eclipse.

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:: THE SUN ::
Are you ready to step through this cosmic transition led by your authentic guidance? With the Sun traveling through Pisces, the upcoming solar eclipse is poised to launch us into a new frontier. It also concludes the in-depth work begun in the sign of Pisces on March 20, 2015, when we had the first of four solar eclipses in the sign of the fish. Let the nostalgic qualities of the Sun in Pisces help you to reminisce and feel. Think back to March 25, 2015, and consider how your life has shifted since then? What has come to fruition since then? What do you still need to release?

:: THE MOON ::
Unlike the soft and gentle feel of Pisces, Sagittarius represents blunt fire and a deep need for expansive freedom. The Moon in mutable Sagittarius pushes back on the more subtle aspects of Pisces. Sagittarius loves fun and freedom, and when the moon travels through this sign, we may want a party more than quiet reflection. With the moon squaring not just the Sun, but the nodes of fate as well, it behooves us to refrain from any heedless, or even reckless, activity. If we can, instead, allow the adventure seeking aspects of Sagittarius to take us on an inner journey of self-evaluation—we can use the bold aspects of Sag to speak our spiritual truth in a way that helps us integrate the wisdom of the eclipses, so we embody our greatest authenticity.

:: THE SQUARE ::
With the Sun in Pisces squaring the Moon in Sagittarius, we may feel an intense desire to escape. Both Pisces and Sag have inclinations towards diversion and avoidance. With the moon squaring the sun, and the nodes of fate, we stand to make tremendous progress towards our desired outcome, assuming we stay with our process and allow lots of space for messiness.

:: THE MESSAGE ::
Both Pisces and Sagittarius represent the mutable energy of the zodiac—mutable meaning, liable to change. So, as the eclipses sweep through our lives, this waning quarter Sagittarius Moon serves as a broom, clearing out the debris. Allow room for change. Both Pisces and Sagittarius can lead us to want to escape, yet, due to the proximity to the eclipses (and the connection to the nodes of fate), it’s incredibly important to do the inner work of staying with what feels uncomfortable. As we consciously grapple with the intensity of our emotions, and the deep spiritual work associated with our conscious evolution, it may be tempting to check out. I highly recommend staying with the process. This waning quarter Sagittarius Moon indicates a release of something that is either blocking us or holding us back—and if we stick with the process, even the uncomfortable parts, we’ll shed what we must; prepping us exactly as needed for the upcoming new moon solar eclipse. Stay awake.

For more Moon wisdom or to book a coaching session with from Jennifer visit Jenniferracioppi.com. To learn more about how to work with each Moon phase, join our community of likeminded spiritual activists at Moon Club!

MATERIAL GIRL, MYSTICAL WORLD: MELINDA LEE HOLM

With her custom jewelry prescriptions, Melinda Lee Holm combines her twin passions for crystals and the Tarot—with the wider mission of awakening her clients to a life of personal evolution…

The Numinous: What card and stone best represent your current life #goals? 
Melinda Lee Holm: The Empress and Pyrite. The Empress rules over a richly abundant world that she has created for herself by caring for everything around her with love and encouragement. She is the giver and the protector of life and she revels in her gifts by beaming love out all around her. I dressed as The Empress for Halloween this year, and am focused on actively working to embody her to create a world where we are all loved and treasured for our gifts and we are all safe and cared for.

This election threw me into despair and leaning harder into The Empress is helping to guide me as I step up to act to protect the rights and safety of women, people of color, immigrants, LGBTQ people, Muslims and the poor. And Pyrite is the gas to fuel this action. It supplies confidence, willpower, and motivation and it enhances our innate powers of manifestation. I invite everyone to print out a picture of The Empress and place her in your home as an inspiration and carry a piece of Pyrite!

TN: What came first, jewelry or Tarot, and when did you first combine the two? 
MLH: Tarot came first. I grew up in suburban MN and I was 13 when I got my first deck (the Thoth deck), the accompanying book, and a book on witchcraft. It changed my life. When I started doing readings for myself alone in my bedroom, I remember having this immediate access to a meditative, connected state. I would close my eyes and focus on visualizing white light shooting from my third eye and would be physically rocked by the sensation of being flooded with this magical connection. Looking back, I see baby me doing these vibration-raising rituals and I am so proud of that kid. I had a pretty rough childhood and finding this solace helped me survive with my soul intact.

20 years later I had a friend suffer a sudden and tragic loss. I went to my cards seeking guidance on how to help and as I turned over the cards, a strong aesthetic theme emerged. I felt called to make a necklace with natural stones in colors and numbers corresponding to the cards, and with energies for emotional healing and spiritual connection. As it turned out the colors and numbers were favorites of the loved one who had passed. It was incredibly moving. I knew it was the beginning of something great.

TN: Why does every modern woman need a talisman? 
MLH: Because self-adornment is an ancient sacred act. By wearing a talisman, we connect to our lineage of ancestors who adorned and anointed themselves with oils, scents, clothing, and jewelry imbued with magical power and purpose. In our contemporary culture, we are removed from this process and instead offered mass-produced items we have little to no energetic connection with. Wearing a personal talisman is a silent yet radical act of self-assertion and reconnection with the earth and with our ancestors.

TN: What themes are most common among your clients, and what stones do you use to address them? 
MLH: The culture we live in means there are a lot of blockages around communication and balancing work and play, especially for women. So I often use Aquamarine to open clear communication with oneself and others and to soothe anxiety, Green Tourmaline to re-connect with the heart, and Garnet to ignite a passion for building dreams in a realistic, grounded manner.

I also work a lot on balancing the elements, which isn’t something I set out to do. For example, if someone has a ton of Fire and Water going on, but little Earth or Air, they are likely to feel exhausted from a lack of grounding, and frustrated and possibly even despairing that their message is being misunderstood. In this case, I would pay close attention to the elemental attributes of stones. There are so many levels to a reading. It’s what makes my work incredibly interesting and fulfilling.

TN: What’s your favorite way to cleanse and charge your crystals? 
MLH: I’m a huge fan of Selenite, a purifier and spiritual activator that I find to be extremely effective. I have big slabs of it in my studio and every jewelry piece I make gets a nap on the Selenite before it goes home. I also keep a piece with my personal jewelry. My pieces are also blessed with Palo Santo as I ask them to work with the client’s guides, angels, and ancestors to carry their energy to where it is most needed.

For my personal collection of crystals, I do a water rinse once a month on the Full Moon and then roll the cart (it’s a big collection!) over to the window to soak in the moonlight overnight. I also give them a really good smudge when I do my weekly house cleansing.

:: MATERIAL GIRL ::

My label
I’m living for everything Michele Alessandro makes for Gucci. If I could buy it all I would, but instead I admire it from afar and buy vintage. I’m crazy about vintage clothing for stylistic and environmental reasons.

Gucci AW16

My shoes
Oxfords and sneakers. I’m tall, I have foot issues, and I’m a HUGE fan of a butch shoe look.

Saint Laurent sneakers, $595, Net-a-porter.

My fragrance
Tea rose oil – opens the heart and smells amazing.

Tea Rose Oil, from $14, Body Time.

My jewels
I’m constantly making myself things depending on what I’m feeling, but I always wear the gold Sigil necklace from my collection, piles of rings, and a piece of Black Tourmaline somewhere to keep my energetic field clear.

Sigal necklace, from $175, Melinda Lee Holm.

My pampering
A soak, a scrub, and a hot stone bibimbap at the Korean spa.

My home
A purple house filled with crystals, art, music, and animals in beautiful Los Angeles.

My food
All of it. Everything. I love food. That hot stone bibimbap at the spa may be my favorite, but it would be really hard to choose.

 

:: MYSTICAL WORLD ::

My awakening 
It’s ongoing. I think we all need to focus on being in a state of constant spiritual awakening until we’re dead. Not doing so assumes we’ve gotten as close as we can or as we care to the Divine. I’m greedy. I want as much expansion and evolution as I can get in this lifetime.

My sign
Cancer Sun, Virgo Ascendant, Taurus Moon, year of the Fire Snake.

My mantra
“This time will pass”—it works to soothe during the lows, and as a reminder to really be present and soak in the highs. It relates very closely to the Wheel of Fortune card, which offers an additional comfort of being looked after by the Universe.

My healer
As with all of us, ultimately myself—with and assistance from guides here on Earth and in the Spirit realm.

My reading
I always go back to Angela Davis, Joseph Campbell, and many, many metaphysical texts.

My mission
To empower and inspire as many people as I can to commit to a life of constant personal evolution.

Discover more about Melinda Lee Holm and her work, and schedule a Prescription Adornments consultation at Melindaleeholm.com

NOWHERE TO HIDE: READING FOR THE SCORPIO FULL MOON

Let it all hang out…and allow “it” to spark your transformation, says Danielle Paige. PLUS a channelled angelic message for the Scorpio Full Moon by Jackie O’Shea

The need to feel. The need to destroy. The need to begin again, new, pure, hungry for something the makes your soul feel alive again. The need to hold on tight…and yet, to let go.

Welcome to this week’s Scorpio Full Moon. She will be exact on April 22 at 1:24am EST at 2 degrees of Scorpio.

A Full Moon shines a light on all things hidden. There is nowhere to hide now; it all comes out and usually in a dramatic way. Combine this with Scorpio energy, and we’ve entered a zone where we’re being asked to crack open and reveal the parts that might not be so pretty. Which, of course, is always subjective.

It may be pretty to cry – because it means you’re releasing old pain. It may be pretty to be a hot mess – because you’re feeling raw, untamed, and unapologetic, which in itself can be freeing and sexy!

A Full Moon is a powerful portal that help us tune into the Universal energy as we become moved by her gravitational pull. She dances over our soul. She plays with our heart. She lights us up. She brings our emotions to a head. She can keep us up at night, revealing questions that have been trapped in our subconscious for some time.

She taunts us….and when she’s in Scorpio, she does so in a transformative and healing way by going way, way below what’s happening up on the surface to get to the heart of the matter.

This Scorpio Full Moon may feel intense. But hold on to the awareness that she is here to show us the magic that’s hiding deep within. Scorpio energy doesn’t care what something looks like on the surface because it knows that underneath….inside….deep in the shadows….there is is a spark so bright it has the potential to transform into something more powerful than anything we’ve seen before.

This is where we are reborn, from this spark, from this light. But, first, something must be destroyed. That’s just how Scorpio works. Seductive and mysterious, Scorpio understands, as with everything in life, that we must let go of what has been order to breathe anew, to feel alive, and to move. Because when we move, when we transform and evolve, is when we truly live.

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Here are a few tips to help you tap into the transformative powers of this Scorpio Full Moon:

1) Allow yourself to access places within yourself that you haven’t felt in a while. It’s okay, you’re safe. The holding onto the past is what’s keeping you stuck.
2) Release anything that no longer serves you. Energetically imagine sending it down into a vortex and clearing it out of your energy field. Cut cords, take a salt bath, anything that will help you let go of the old.
3) Magick! Break out the tarot cards, runes, candles, crystals etc. This is a perfect time to use your tools to help you activate your intuition and turn on your witchy vibe.
4) Observe. See the light in others and it will help you identify the light in yourself.
5) Cleanse your chakras to balance your energy field so that you can feel lighter and more open.
6) And last but not least…sex it up! Scorpio is all about passion and intimacy so bust out the black leather and/or lace lingerie and channel your inner Lilith!

Still want to go deeper and do some healing work? Danielle is hosting a virtual circle for the Scorpio Full Moon Friday April 22. Find more here.

:: CHANNELLED ANGELIC MESSAGE FOR THE SCORPIO FULL MOON ::

There are many opportunities for you to work with the lunar energies. With so many planets currently in retrograde, this means allowing yourself to backtrack, embracing this time of review and reflection, and not get so caught up in the forward progress that you may desire. These are times of reflection, times of change, and times of embodiment.

Allow things to be as they are, for the tides to ebb and flow. Any roadblocks are here to help your highest vibrational destiny come into being. If barriers, false starts, and trials and tribulations appear, allow yourself the time to slow down and reflect on what no longer serves you that can now be transcended and released – even if this simply points to an emotional response pattern that is being triggered. Allow yourself to work with what IS, embracing that everything is happening for your highest destiny and evolution, even if it doesn’t appear so.

Begin to embody compassionate resonance during times of struggle and hardship as well as times of joy and transformation. You can help others more deeply by going into the depths of your own struggle and pain. And there is no need to worry about taking too much time to process the darkness, for time is infinite from the perspective of the soul.

Your lessons and evolution are far more significant that you may currently imagine, since you are embodying a place of learning where you can express into form all of the different facets of your multi-dimensional self, and be a full expression of infinity. The only limit you face now is in prohibiting yourself from embodying your truth, whatever that truth may be – a turbulent emotional state, a joyous state, or somewhere in between.

The current lunar energies are here to help you begin to embody your truth, whatever that looks like for you, and to express it into form without holding back. It is safe to fully feel every emotion, every sorrow, every hardship, and trial, allowing the density of your emotions to pass through your physical and energetic body. Allow the density to transcend and be transformed into higher light vibrations, creating the potential for newness.

You have the opportunity to begin to embody your highest path now and live the life that you desire to live. There is nothing holding you back in the time-space continuum but your own internal perceptions and barriers of consciousness. These have neurological ties to behavioral patterning encoded into your body hologram, but all of this CAN be loosened and transformed. All of this can change. You are being redefined in every moment, constantly creating new cells and patterns of behavior and embodiment.

We are proud of you for allowing all things and creation to be as they are. Now is a time to transcend time and space so that you can be everything that you are, recognizing yourself in all of the physical manifestations of the world. Enjoy the embodiment of this divinity, enjoy even the struggle and the heartbreak, so that you feel safe transcending the cycles of time that your mind has become entrapped by.

Allow yourself to grow with grace and transcend the old energetic limitations and boundaries that have held you back in the past from embodying your full divine higher self. You are an infinite creative immortal being and there is no reason to think of yourself as less than the divine embodiment that you are. We are proud of you every time you chose grace over struggle. We are proud of you every time you transcend an old karmic situation. We are proud of you every time you breath deep and take a moment to pause the breath. In higher consciousness you are infinite, all things are obtainable, and you are the infinity that you seek and desire.

Join Jackie O’Shea for an Embodying the Divine Feminine Full Moon Circle on Thursday, April 21st at 7pm PST available via live stream, recording, or in person in Los Angeles

Details and Tickets: embodydivinefeminine.splashthat.com

OUR DEEPEST TRUTH: READING FOR THE NEW MOON IN CAPRICORN

The New Moon in Capricorn means business! Channel the energy of the goat to get what you desire in 2016, says Hannah Ariel

New year, New Moon! The one coming up in the constellation of Capricorn is SOLID, and rock steady ready for your absolute resolution on January 10th. In fact, you may have noticed that the cosmos has already begun to test your accountability in the days leading up to this Moon. Beginning the third day of 2016, an astrological extravaganza of energy has been extracting deep, potentially life-changing realizations out of us, all to remind us to operate from a place serious integrity this year.

Venus in Sagittarius square Neptune in Pisces: Illusions are fading fast, we are becoming more attuned to attract what we really need rather than what we delude ourselves into believing.

Venus in Sagittarius meets up with Saturn, also in Sag: What we need and who we are being attracted to becomes so clear there’s no escaping the truth of what our creativity is urging us to work with and define.

Mars enters Scorpio: The actions we are taking are becoming more strategic, the way we go about getting what we want intensifies, we are driven by deep, nearly insatiable desires, and we are ready to test certain limits.

Mercury enters Aquarius and squares Mars in Scorpio: Moving into the future requires us to dig in to some inner work on ourselves first, redefining what we want.

Mercury goes retrograde in Aquarius and re-enters Capricorn: Before we move into the future we may pick up a few more pieces, and uncover a few more facts to keep in mind.

Sun conjuncts Pluto in Capricorn, square Uranus in Aries: We are triggered to re-identify with the breakdown/breakthrough story that began transforming us in 2008; we have experienced our annual renewal of personal power.

Jupiter stations retrograde right on top of the North Node in Virgo: What has expanded and evolved since August 2015 is up for review; time unravels the details of whatever big picture has unfolded; the destined meaning behind certain opportunities can be seen and integrated.

Now, take a deep breath, as all of this astrology has given us some seriously important information. It’s no exaggeration to say this very first New Moon of 2016 can truly be life-changing if we really get involved. It’s as if the Universe is asking us to be guided by the truth – our deepest truth, the whole truth, nothing but the truth. So help us god/goddess – a New Moon in Capricorn means business!

In fact, Capricorn doesn’t want to embark on anything it cannot successfully complete. A strong and empowered Capricorn takes all the information it can get and uses it to the utmost advantage to ensure a measure of reward. Capricorn learns exactly which mountain it is meant to climb, and then forges ahead without once looking back!

It’s a good thing we already ran through the whole gamut of our emotions by the end of 2015, when the Moon was full in Cancer. Because to the contrary, cardinal earth sign Capricorn doesn’t take into account how something feels; it simply puts in the work, and does what it must to get to where it needs to be. Now this may sound ruthless, but the truth is that without this earthy empowerment we’d hardly fulfill our destined potential.

Think of this New Moon in Capricorn as the captain that is poised to reign all this cosmic energy in, and steer your ship straight. The work will be in identifying not just where you are going, but why you are choosing a particular destination, owning that decision, and then continuing to decide how you’re going to get there. Again, all without looking back!

We are arriving at a powerful turning point where the more energy we use to turn around and look back, the more we will potentially be misguided, have some wind knocked out of our sails, and lose our cardinal determination. Even though Mercury is retrograde, it is traveling through an earth sign; whatever steps we take, even if they appear to be taking us backward, are nonetheless grounded in the process of moving forward.

The retrograde began in Aquarius; we’ve seen the future; we know what comes next. Now comes the time for some careful footwork. Contrary to how you might be feeling about it, think of this Mercury retrograde as being your saving grace. It will help things go oh so slow enough to make sure you don’t miss A THING. Another saving grace is that this New Moon in Capricorn makes a beautiful trine to Jupiter, implying that there is indeed potential for smooth sailing ahead. So long as we do the work, we will get there! With a beam from Jupiter, the cosmos is routing for us.

Also, among the multitude of transits mentioned, give extra attention to your understanding of the Venus/Saturn conjunction happening just the day before the New Moon in Capricorn. The fusion of these two is significant – although it happens in the constellation of Sagittarius, Saturn is the ruler of Capricorn. And if Saturn is up to something, we really need to get crystal clear about it!

Keywords: authority, architecture, responsibility, time. It is what must be. It doesn’t matter if it’s a petty situation. It doesn’t matter if it has to break apart a pre-existing structure. With Saturn, we see: IT MUST BE, and I will do what it takes. With Venus in this mix, this transit begs the question: How much does your life NEED this to happen?

It’s about knowing what situations will create more harmony for you in the long run. If you want to build that beautiful new relationship, job, creative project, business, family, home – you have to WANT it so much you are willing to sacrifice what is not helping the process, turn around, and go the other way.

Considering this is first time Venus has conjunct Saturn in Sagittarius in almost 27 years, what your life desires may very well be something you are experiencing for the first time in a long time (if ever) – something entirely new, wildly exciting, passionately daring; something totally ready for your adventurous creativity. What do you really want to begin? OWN IT, because right now you really can – if only you do indeed, begin.

Note: Even if you aren’t sure of where all of these aspects and transits happened in your personal birth chart, you are ahead in merely beginning to contemplate what the cosmos may have been trying to tell you these first ten days of January.

2016 is here. Be the determined mountain goat that is Capricorn, and let the force of this Saturn-ruled moon be with you. You will do it. You will get there. You’ve got this. For it must be.

Book a personal reading with Hannah Ariel at: neptuned.in@gmail.com

READING FOR THE FULL MOON IN TAURUS: OCTOBER 26 2015

The October 27 Full Moon in Taurus is here to shine a light on what you truly value and love about yourself, says Hannah Ariel…

“You have extraordinary treasures hidden within you. Bringing forth those treasures takes work and faith and focus and courage. Do you have the courage to bring forth this work? The treasures that are hidden inside you are hoping you will say yes.” – Elizabeth Gilbert, Big Magic

Hold on and dig deep into the heart; Tuesday October 27th we have ourselves a full moon at three degrees Taurus, shining its lovelight. What do you love most deeply about yourself? How can you build on what you find? Where do you want to go from there? Do you have the courage to let go of exhausted endeavors and expired relationships in order to bring forth more of your own creativity? The light of this Moon is at work to uncover the subtle nature of the way you experience fulfillment.

A Venus-ruled jewel in the sky, this Full Moon in Taurus is indeed a treasure with positive aspects every which way. The Moon is on the receiving end of a triple conjunction of Venus, Jupiter and Mars in Virgo and the power of Pluto in Capricorn – loosely forming a grand trine, a trinity of earthly energy. Venus, Jupiter and Mars are a triple conjunction of attraction, expansion and action all at once. Natural fulfillment of our most sincere efforts is a promise. With the Sun in Scorpio only you will know the secret to what your heart truly desires. Scorpio energy is dynamic, personal, intrinsically motivated, and will give you the strength to honor what you learn about your deepest needs this week.

Since the Full Moon in Taurus is ruled by the planet Venus, while Venus happens to be quite busy making multiple connections to multiple planets on this day, taking a closer look to see what Venus is doing will show us we have more than enough energy at hand to strengthen our understanding of how things are evolving…

Venus conjunct (combined and infused) with Jupiter and Mars in Virgo: We are seeing what we value in the light of a whole new reality. With an expanded sense of what is possible, our actions are more aligned than ever with all that we want to attract more of into our lives. The ground rules have shifted. There is room for so much more health and happiness.

Venus in Virgo trine (harmonious flow of support) with Pluto in Capricorn: We are being attracted to people and opportunities that connect with parts of our soul that need to be harnessed. The power of our attractions is real right now. Roles are transforming. Meaningful and destined relationships are growing organically, while others continue to naturally fall away. Leave concerns about your love life to the Universe.

Venus in Virgo in an opposition (face to face) with Chiron in Pisces: We are learning to heal our imperfections by allowing ourselves to be imperfect. It is a time to let go of shame and self-blame and allow things to surface and just be – especially in regard to relationships. Trust the natural flow of things no matter how messy or chaotic it may appear at the moment; free yourself from needing to control every detail, save the day or save face. Find peace. Create more art. Hold off on passing judgment on yourself or others. Find a quiet space. Loose yourself to the flow of time; know that everything we wish to attract takes time.

Two weeks ago, the New Moon asked us to re-think what is possible, see through who we have been in relation to others and re-define who we want to be with brilliant clarity. This Full Moon in Taurus wants to make sure we deepen our connection to our love, our creativity, and tighten our own inner laws of attraction to manifest true happiness. It takes a Supermoon like this one to reveal our innermost resources and appreciate the richness we feel when we tap into them. So say “yes” to what you have to offer to yourself and others from the heart; the rest of the magic will manifest…Big Magic.

For additional support, chanting during this Full Moon is highly favored as Taurus rules the throat chakra; where we need to say “yes” more. It is within this energy center that we experience our capacity for creativity, and allow the life force to lovingly speak through us. As the tide is high, we have a lot of power to activate and heal the throat chakra, especially through chanting mantra – mantra is a sound wave that upon repetition enables us to wipe out fears and align with a lively, more gratifying, energy flow.

Try chanting Ong Sohung – a heart centered mantra – at this time, to activate your creative consciousness and remind your heart that it has a say in what comes next. “Ong” means the creative consciousness of the universe. “Sohung” means I am that! Listen and sing along to this enchanting version by Snatam Kaur for a totally healing and expansive Full Moon in Taurus experience – not forgetting that Taurus also rules music and the metaphysical experience of song! Let the power of this mantra remind you that you are endlessly gifted inside.

For a personal reading with Hannah Ariel contact her at [email protected]

How will you use the Full Moon in Taurus energy this week? Share in the comments below, and connect with us on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter

MY MYSTICAL LIFE: THE SCENT OF A GODDESS, AND 5 EMPOWERING TAROT LESSONS

This week, 5 empowering tarot lessons that helped me past my fear of the cards…

I got over my fear of the Tarot. Confession. As much as I’ve always been attracted to the tarot, it’s also a tool I’ve shied away from as a lot of the time the cards I pull for myself tend towards the negative – if not downright scary! Anybody else with me on this?? It’s one reason I love Louise Androlia’s Tarotscopes, as no matter how “heavy” the message, she finds a way to put an empowering spin on it.

When my friend Elyssa told me she’d got over HER fear of the cards with a tarot lessons from her favorite reader Lindsay Mack (a.k.a. Wild Soul Healing), I decided it was time to move beyond my own pussy-ass position on the tarot, too. So I booked a session with Lindsay – and it was so, so awesome!! Here are 5 key fear-busting take-aways from our 90-minute tarot lesson:

  • Tarot is not a predictor of anything. Tarot is just a mirror, a bridge to an awareness of the answer that is for your absolute highest good – the Truth with a capital “T”.
  • The only thing all living beings have in common is that we all experience evolution. Which means there’s nothing that can come up for you, or happen to you, that isn’t for you. See the tarot this way, and you’ll see that every message in every card is an invitation home.
  • The Major Arcana in particular (The Fool through The World), contain an invitational energy from divine intelligence to ask us to evolve and to wake up. But since our nervous system and brain chemistry prefers the comfort of staying still, evolution and growth will always be accompanied by resistance and fear.
  • Evolution is a process of expansion (excitement about change) and contraction (resistance to / fear of change). “Negative” cards (like the Devil, the Tower) simply represent BIG contractions, to show us where we’re slipping back into old patters, and ask us to examine why this is.
  • Finally, when reading into a card, interpret the message as if you were reading for your five-year old self – with loving kindness, and a protective attitude.

Which is already making me feel way better about my future tarot lessons. If this is where you’re at too, Lindsay suggests a daily card pull to begin to get to know your deck better, with the enquiry: “Highest power, please can I have some more information on the truth with a capital “T” about (insert pressing concern of the day here).”

Oh, and read this book! Rachel Pollack’s Tarot Wisdom

Book a reading or tarot lessons with Lindsay at the link, and follow her on Instagram to find out about her Sacred Tarot School.

I reconnected to Lakshmi. My fave – the Hindu Goddess of wealth, prosperity and fortune. And no, not through meditation, prayer, a badass new Goddess deck, or any other sort of spiritual practice – I simply restocked my supply of Lakshmi fragrance oil from The Goddess Line! Which happens to smell a whole lot like an old favorite of mine, the now discontinued Rumeur by Lanvin…only it’s totally vegan (as in the “musky” element of the scent comes from a blend of oils, opposed to the glandular secretions of actual animals) and chemical free.

V important to me these days, since I had a facial with celebrity aesthetician Christine Chin. Known as “Mean Christine” for her take-no-prisoners approach to pimples, she told me: “perfume is poison to the neck!” As in, the alcohol in most mass market fragrance is what dries out the skin on your neck, causing a crepe-paper effect, enlarged pore and wrinkles. And Christine is Gisele’s go-to. I rest my case.

The Goddess Line Lakshmi Roll-on Fragrance Oil, $30

 

BRAINWASHED: IS LANDMARK A CULT?

When I did the Landmark Forum, I was following in the footsteps of the most badass people I know – and I learned some invaluable life lessons. So why did I find myself asking; ‘is Landmark a cult?’ By Ruby Warrington. Images: Alex Prager for Garage Magazine.

 

Half way into day three at the Landmark Forum, I was ready to run for the hills. Along with 150 or so other people, from every walk of life, I had been cooped-up in a windowless basement in midtown Manhattan for almost 13 hours a day straight, whilst being told that everything I knew about myself, about my beliefs, and about the world, was an illusion. An illusion created by my “always listening” mind (Landmark speak for the ego) to avoid taking full responsibility for my life.

The course leader was busy psyching the crowd up for the “big reveal” – the key teaching of the Forum that would come later that day, embracing which, we’d been promised, would lead to a life of “infinite possibilities”. So long as we “enrolled” everybody else we knew into the Landmark conversation too (at $600 a pop), and then committed to an on going ($900+) study of their “curriculum for life”.

All around me, people had already been having life-changing epiphanies as they’d worked the course – coming out from behind their “rackets” (“fixed ways of being that result in persistent complaints”) and calling friends and family members they had been “pretending” things were cool with to “cough up the fur-ball” of their most shaming truths (‘Mom, I never come visit because actually it felt like you never really loved me’).

Encouraged to publically share their breakthroughs, there had been tears, and there had been cheers. And here I was, feeling an almost physical repulsion to the teachings. Earlier, we’d been asked to identify our “strong suits” – coping mechanisms we’d adopted at key points of trauma in our lives, which had become “ways of acting and being you rely on to produce results and make it in life.” Which, obviously, had to go, along with all the other “stories” you told yourself about…yourself.

I’d identified one of my strong suits as what I always considered a healthy degree of scepticism, or discernment. It’s what made me a good editor. But now it felt like a straight jacket. I’d paid my money and I wanted a breakthrough too! But all I could think, as I took in the scenes around me, was; “OMG this is actual brainwashing in action. Why did nobody warn me Landmark is…a cult?!”

The “c-word” hit the headlines last week, in the aftermath of the HBO documentary Going Clear – an inside expose on the Church of Scientology. And watching the opening scenes, in which they described the Church’s central process of “auditing” members in order to process their limiting beliefs, I was taken right back to that basement room in the Landmark HQ.

Was Landmark Scientology lite?

The dictionary definition of “brainwashing” is; “to make (someone) adopt radically different beliefs by using systematic and often forcible pressure”. True, nobody forced me to do the Landmark Forum – I actually decided to sign up because I knew so many amazing, go-getting, and seemingly highly-evolved individuals who’d done it, and I basically wanted a piece.

But the constant pressure throughout the course to “enrol” our friends, co-workers, and family members definitely crossed over into coercion territory in my book – echoing the way Scientologists are asked to “disconnect” from any people in their life who don’t adopt the teachings of the church. It’s also the kind of behaviour that gets organisations labelled “cult”, opposed to simply “community” or “club”.

The fact that during Landmark I was also confined to that one windowless room for three consecutive 13-hour days, with minimal breaks for food, and asked not to take notes or go to the toilet (this used to be enforced rigidly, but nobody actually stopped me when I did sneak out for a restroom break), also felt a lot like “systematic” pressure to adopt their teachings.

Then there was the bizarre lingo and double-talk they used to scramble my synapses and “re-program” my thinking. Overall, by the time I left, my scepticism very much intact, it felt simultaneously like a narrow escape…and like there must be something really, really wrong with me.

Watching Going Clear (named for the ultimate goal in Scientology – a mind that’s completely “clear”, or washed, of negative beliefs), the phrase that kept returning to me was; “the Emperor’s New Clothes.”

You know the story right? About the sneaky tailor who convinces the Emperor his “invisible” new suit is actually made of the finest cloth. In fear of questioning their leader’s beliefs, the Emperor’s subjects go along with it – complementing him on his beautiful new clothes, despite the fact they can see for themselves he’s naked.

And this desire to conform is something I felt they played on at Landmark, too. Deeply rooted in our most basic psychology, human beings are pack animals after all. Positioning yourself as the outsider is also something akin to suicide on a primal level. In ancient times, distancing yourself from the tribe was a sure-fire way to get killed by predators, or die from lack of food and warmth. Going along with what’s being indoctrinated therefore is not only preferable, it’s the only truly “safe” option.

Did that explain why everybody around me was whooping and cheering when the “big reveal” finally occurred…while it seemed to me like the biggest “racket” on the planet?

Coming out of Landmark, I immediately wanted to speak to the switched-on women I knew who’d done it too. I was desperate to know if they’d felt the same as me – or if I was, in fact, a hopelessly repressed freak-a-zoid, too scared of facing my own demons to even acknowledge their existence. The overarching response I got was that yes, it was a huge shame that there was so much cult-like emphasis on “enrolment”, and the accompanying financial hard sell. Because the teachings in and of themselves were awesome…right?

And here comes the really interesting part. Seven months on, I can see that they were absolutely right – and that the Landmark Forum was one of the most pivotal experiences on my inner journey to date.

We are all slaves to our monkey minds; we do self-sabotage with the stories we choose to believe about ourselves; and we do have to allow ourselves to be vulnerable, to “look bad”, and to see beyond the illusion of reality, in order to evolve into the highest expression of ourselves. It is in this place of ultimately authentic self-expression that a life of infinite possibility lies.

Behind all the crazy linguistics and mental manipulation, these are the central teachings of Landmark (and of Scientology, from what I’ve read, not to mention Buddhist philosophy!). With hindsight, I can see how having them strong-armed into my psyche over that one mind-bending weekend last September forced me, on some deep level, to accept and work with limiting parts of myself I used to believe were unassailable.

I’ve since had the kind of searingly honest conversations with my mother that have taken our relationship to a whole other level. I no longer blindly accept what my belief system tells me, and look instead to the cold, hard facts of life.

And if I railed against actually calling any people in my life to “get complete” during my Landmark weekend (I had a lengthy email exchange with my mom, and called a friend to confess a very innocuous white lie), I have since embraced the concept of not sugar-coating stuff for fear of upsetting people, or getting a bad reaction – and seen massive benefits. All common sense stuff, actually, “but delivered in an environment of startling intensity,” as another journalist wrote about Landmark.

As for the “big reveal”? You’ll have to do the Forum and find out what it is for yourself. And if that means I’m now “enrolling” you – well, there must be some chinks in my sceptical strong suit after all.

Have you done the Landmark Forum? What did you get out of it? Connect and share your stories on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook

To find out more about the Landmark Forum and their courses visit Landmarkworldwide.com

MAGIC MUSHROOMS AS COUPLES THERAPY. SERIOUSLY.

In the latest instalment of Now Age relationship column Yogi Vegan Lez, Alexandra Roxo and her GF experiment with magic mushrooms as a form of couples therapy…

Alexandra and Orion get intimate with the contents of each other’s head…

What do people usually do when they leave yoga class. Drink some water? Go for an egg white omelette? Take a shower? Well, on that Sunday morning my iCal sent me a post-Vinyasa reminder: “Spiritual Awakening. a.k.a. Magic Mushroom Journey!” complete with a mushroom emoji and a smiley face. And so walking home through Williamsburg’s leafy McCarren Park, my girlfriend Orian and I whipped out our ‘shrooms and ate them right there and then. At 10am.

We had both wanted to do something special for our anniversary, and after a friend mentioned a beautiful afternoon she and her hubby had with some mushies, I was inspired! JUST WHAT I NEEDED. If women are scheduling their births these days, why can’t I schedule my DIY spiritual awakening? Plus, magic mushrooms are cheaper than a yoga retreat upstate and can be delivered directly to your house, so there’s really no excuse to not take them, right?

After sharing a vegan club sandwich on GF Rye, we sat and watched the dogs in the park for a moment. Then I was like “Umm, we should walk towards our house. Like Now.” Orian had never been on this kind of ‘journey’ so I also wanted to make sure she didn’t start tripping out while staring in the face of a Frenchie or…um, just crossing the street. Cos that could be dangerous.

I felt sort of like the person guiding the ship, the unofficial road woman or gatekeeper. When she kept saying things like: “When I do drugs I usually need a lot of water…” and “drugs make me feel…” I kept trying to tell her, “THIS IS NOT DRUGS. YOU ARE ON A PLANT MEDICINE ODYSSEY.” She finally succumbed to my benevolent dictatorship, and seemed to accept that a mushroom journey isn’t like a molly trip or a cocaine high.

As for me, this was the first time I’d done mushrooms completely sober of any alcohol and cigarettes. Not the first time I’d attempted an afternoon of mushroom-induced couples therapy though. The last time I tried bonding with my lover this way, we were holed-up in a dreamy Silver Lake cottage where got into a fight, I had a vision of an energetic cut between us where I saw our stars zooming off in opposite directions, realized quite viscerally we were poison for each other, starting having a panic attack, and didn’t sleep for two days.

So gee whiz, why wouldn’t I want to open this door with my new girlfriend of one year, on our anniversary, after an emotional month of me cleansing, quitting smoking, and doing all sorts of energy work?

But we had actually both been sober and clean and totally vegan for over two weeks, and I knew this quiet energetic state was essential to our ‘shrooming success. We continued wandering back towards our house as was the original plan: take a little bit, take a walk, just be together. I soon had to pee though, and we stopped in a cafe to use the loo. The bathroom walls were covered in a magazine collage. Who does that? And then the bathroom started to cave in on me.

I shut my eyes, ran out past the innocent bystanders (i.e. brunch crowd of people not on mushrooms) and what ensued was the most glorious and intense bonding session known to woman.

Magical Mushroom by Kaitlyn Fister via Behance.net

We held crystals (and FYI, holding crystals while on mushrooms is like holding an elephant or the sun or rain). We opened a book and could only look at one painting and then close the book. Then we had this realization that if we each balanced our Yin and Yang energies, we wouldn’t be searching for balance outside of ourselves. For someone who is bisexual and constantly trying to balance out masculine and feminine vibes I realized that seeking Yang outside of myself wasn’t necessary. I can align with someone else who has balanced energies and then we are each neutral!

This was our tripped out realization. Maybe we would all become androgynous beings again one day! Beyond gender! (I think I actually read that in some article about the next evolution of humans from a channeled entity…) Over the course of six hours, we laughed, we cried, we had profound healing conversations about life and death, and took quiet time alone.

The different phases of the trip were not too unlike my journeys with ayuhasca and peyote. There was a time of feeling physically unstable or unwell. Then there was some euphoria, the feeling of oneness. Then some darker challenges that came our way. That’s the ‘work’ part. The medicine comes in and gets shit done.

The result was what felt like a month of traditional couples therapy in one afternoon. There were no distractions. Except I kept wanting to eat dates and nuts because I felt I needed to ground myself, but was also afraid I might choke. But besides that it was cell phones off and in a drawer. Computers closed. It was magical.

Like everything in life, relationships take maintenance. As we change as individuals, we are altered as a couple. And sometimes these changes can cause a rift, a damn, a chasm, an avalanche, tidal wave. So if you’re tired of the traditional approach to processing your differences, here are our tips for a successful, and magical, couples bonding day on mushrooms:

PLAN AHEAD. The last thing you want is for your landlord to show up to fix your toilet or to have to take your dog out. If you’re opting to do the work at home, make sure your roomie isn’t planning to bake cookies to house music. If you can get away, get away. But why not try and tune into your own world instead of fleeing it?

UNPLUG. Turn off TV, computers, and cell phones. It’s unlikely you’ll even remember what Instagram is during your therapy session, but if you do find yourself tempted to check it – don’t. Just don’t. In your vulnerable state, do you really want to see a photo of Angelina Jolie’s chicken pox? You do not.

BE PRESENT. When you feel overwhelmed, listen to yourself. And if something comes up, share it with your partner. This is the whole deal with the ‘couples therapy’ thing. I asked Orian a few times: “What’s wrong?” She replied: “Oh, I don’t want to get sad or cry.” And I was like, “You can’t fight it! The whole point is to feel what you feel!” And so we were honest when things came up like, “Oh I was just thinking about when you die.” Instead of running from these things, remember you’re here to learn from them.

THE AFTERMATH. Plan to do something gentle afterwards. Light some candles. Have some soup. A bath perhaps. And WRITE IT DOWN. These lessons are invaluable, and it’s likely you will have been flooded with knowledge and wisdom so make sure you keep track.

And most of all, have fun and enjoy being together! And make your next Couple’s Bonding Day one that includes pizza in bed and SNL re-runs, cuz it’s all about the balance.

xx @Yogi_Vegan_Lez

Have you had a healing experience on ‘shrooms? Connect with us on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook and share your story…